HOLLYWOOD—”Fear the Walking Dead” season two, episode three, opened Sunday night with an anticipated collaboration between the familiar faces of the cast of AMC’s web miniseries from this fall, ‘Fear the Walking Dead: Flight 462.’
For those of you that are watching the same series I am – as a passing distraction and temporary zombie-fix until our beloved Rick Grimes graces AMC with his presence when “The Walking Dead” returns, it’s likely you’re not familiar with ‘Flight 462.’
‘Fear the Walking Dead: Flight 462’ is a 16-clip series that shadows a group of passengers that are exposed to the earliest moments of the outbreak aboard a commercial airplane.
The final installment of the 16-clip series foreshadowed the overlap between the two shows in the final few seconds of the series, when it alluded to a scene from season one, episode three of “Fear the Walking Dead,” ‘The Dog’ – Nick Clark, played by Frank Dillane, is trying to break into his neighbors home, when he sees a plane flying overhead, teetering side to side.
AMC acknowledged the collaboration at the conclusion of the webisode series while dually promoting a spin off, encouraging the audience to “learn the fate of flight 462 on Fear the Walking Dead.” AMC later disclosed to fans that one character from the miniseries would go on to join the cast of the show.
Sunday’s episode, ‘Ouroboros,’ opened with the cast of Flight 462 – Michelle Ang’s character, Charlie, (who is now being called Alex for a reason not yet evident to the audience. This could potentially be an attempt to conceal her identity), is shouting for Jake Powell, played by Brendan Meyers.
Amongst the scattered luggage and plane debris, Alex finds Jake, who was severely incapacitated from the crash and they make their way to a lifeboat along with three other survivors.
The commercial breaks and the audience is back with the cast – they’re still on the yacht owned by Victor Strand, Colman Domingo’s character, and the group is fleeing the inferno that overtook Los Angeles in episode one of season two, “Monster.” The yacht’s engine breaks and the group is at a standstill.
With a busted engine the characters are temporarily docked and Alicia Clark, played by Alycia Debnam Carey, is the first to notice luggage strewn about an island nearby. In need of food and supplies, Nick Clark, Alicia, Chris Manawa, played by Lorenzo James Henri, and Daniel Salazar, played by Rubén Blades, venture toward the island.
The group divides and half are on the yacht while the other half assesses the wreckage. The split cast is a familiar style for fans of “The Walking Dead” – the group often diverges and the episode alternates between settings.
There is limited action on deck, aside from Madison and Daniel unveiling Strand’s prospective plans to re-route the yacht toward Baja, Mexico, which after some initial hesitation, eventually became appealing and logical. On the island, however, chaos unraveled.
Chris explored the immediate plane wreckage and stumbled across a survivor, still strapped into the airplane seat. The man’s spine was broken and he was begging for help – he wanted Chris to kill him. This pioneered an inner controversy: in the season finale of season one, Chris’s father, Travis, mercifully killed his mother, Liza, after she was bitten and infected – Chris was incapable of rationalizing this which summoned the question: could he do what his father had to do? The answer is yes. Chris bashed him over the head repeatedly, each stroke fueled by the resentment of his father and late mother.
The group dispersed ashore and Daniel Salazar scrambled in an effort to find them, having had committed to those on deck to look after them. In his efforts, Salazar came across Charlie, or “Alex,” of ‘Flight 462’ who warned him of an approaching herd of the undead.
The group reunites in the midst of battling a mob of zombies – they’re being forced backwards toward the water. As they reach the brink of shore, they look to flee but can’t find Nick. The last the audience saw of Nick Clark, however, was him wrestling with a zombie earlier in the episode, so his fate was uncertain.
Nick emerges from the herd coated in blood from the infected, or “camouflage” – a tactic that “Walking Dead” fans saw Rick Grimes tackle in season one during episode two, “Guts.”
Nick creates a diversion and all four group members are able to escape unharmed, accompanied by Alex and Jake from ‘Flight 462.’
The group arrived back at the yacht and Strand was less than pleased to see they brought company – he demanded that the strangers [Alex and Jake] not come aboard. The majority, led by Travis, persuaded Strand to tie Alex and Jake’s lifeboat to the back of the yacht, therefore they would neither be aboard nor abandoned.
The episode closed with Strand fuming toward the rear of the boat, where he cuts the rope linking the lifeboat to the yacht. The lifeboat floats away but it’s evident to the audience that this will not be the last they see of Alex and Jake.
“Fear the Walking Dead” airs Sundays at 9 p.m. on AMC. Hopefully, episode four will render some substance to the many cliffhangers presented in Sunday night’s episode.